If you live in a popular location during these weird times you have probably witnessed how you are now able to visit the highlights of your city/town like you have travelled 20-30 years back in time, when mass tourism wasn’t a thing. Specially prior to the opening of borders to international visitors (last Tuesday, 2nd of July), Barcelona was almost unrecognizable, surprised local people started posting images of la Sagrada Familia or the Cathedral surroundings completely empty. And one place specially struck my attention: how would the super famous Park Güell, that hosts thousands of people daily, look without visitors? So we decided to take the day off in the middle of the week (more chances to even avoid local people), grab some homemade sandwiches and have a picnic there! We are currently still not taking public transport, so we had a 11km urban hike ahead :) but it was totally worthy, I can say that this has been the best experience of this 2020, and probably one of the best we’ve ever had in Barcelona. Let’s make a lemonade of those (super) bitter 2020 lemons *wink*.
Do you want to see how Park Güell looks when you are the only soul around? Let’s hike to this wonderland hill made by Gaudí!
Barcelona’s architecture & nature gem: Park Güell
Have you ever been to Park Güell? This park & buildings were designed by Gaudí for the Güell family (yes, the same wealthy family that owned the extraordinary Güell Palace in the middle of Barcelona) as their vacation retreat, but also as an investment to construct a garden community, houses that are built surrounded by greenbelts. From the 60 houses initial plan they finally only sold 2, so this is why the common garden areas were completed but you won’t see many housing there. Thankfully the city hall of Barcelona bought the park and has been a public interest & protected area since. Gaudí talent is visible everywhere you look (he mastered so many arts!) but Park Güell is where the trencadís technique (broken tile mosaics) is shown at its best, from the famous dragon in the entrance to specially the wavy stone benches. My favorite part is the 100 columns room, that it was actually designed to host the food market of the community, but it reminds me of a sunken sea palace, with its crooked columns.
We ate our sandwiches next to the flowers, and were able to be for the first time without the mask for a while in a public space, as we were pretty much all the time by ourselves with the exception of the security guards of the park and some other scarce people also admiring the empty wonderland.
Have you ever been to Park Güell? Have you visited any highlight of your city now that they are mostly empty? I have seen some pics of Paris Sacre Coeur that were impressive! However, of course, since I’m an eager visitor from other places as well, I definitely would like everyone to be able to enjoy all those places again soon. Do you have any plans for this summer? I really don’t, I’m taking each day as it comes, taking care of others by putting my mask always and trying to stay safe. I have to admit I am a little bit scared that we are going to be in a new lockdown soon if people keep on not wearing the mask since we are having more virus outbreaks, currently around 50 outbreaks in Spain that need to be specially controlled. Hope you are keeping safe, I send you all my love and strength!